October is pastor appreciation month. I am writing today to encourage you to show your appreciation for your pastoral staff. Sometimes we take for granted honorable, theologically sound pastors. Not every church has the luxury of having a pastor worth appreciating. We should be encouraging our pastors every month, not just in October. 1 Timothy 5:17 – The elders who rule well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching. A good pastor puts a great deal of time into preaching and teaching.
There are times when we may not agree with everything they do. We are still to honor them for the work they do. 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 – 12But we request of you, brethren, that you appreciate those who diligently labor among you, and have charge over you in the Lord and give you instruction, 13and that you esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Live in peace with one another. Pastor is many times a 24 hour a day job. For many of us, we can leave our jobs at the office or at the plant. Pastors are on call all hours of the day. Phone calls for the sick and injured, meetings day and night, are all added to the preaching and teaching. They know that this is part of the ministry, but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve recognition for the work they do.
So, how do we show this appreciation? First, and most importantly, thank God for the pastor He has placed to shepherd your church. After that the options are endless. Take your pastor to lunch. Send a thank you card. Buy them a book they need for their library. Or just take the time to simply say thank you. Be specific so that they know that it comes from the heart.
I would like to take this time now to publicly thank my pastors and former pastors who read this.
John D. – Thank you for helping me start out in my Christian walk. Your knowledge of Scripture and advice during pre-marital counseling were very helpful. I will always be grateful for everything you have done for me and my family. I still listen to your sermons, now that I can get them online.
John G. – It was under your leadership that I really began to flourish. I want to thank you for encouraging me to spread my wings. I think sometimes you saw things in me that I did not realize was there. Under your guidance, I developed a passion for the Bible, and for missions that I did not have before. I can definitely say that I would not be serving the way that I am without you. Thank you for taking me from milk to meat.
James H. – I am constantly amazed at your many years of service to God. I am thankful for the example you give by the way you live. It is definitely an encouragement to see an example of how to finish with endurance. You evangelize more than men half your age. I take that as encouragement to get out there and do better myself.
Jake L. – I don’t know where to begin with you. I think most of the time, I think of you as a friend and forget you are a pastor. So, I guess I should thank you first just for being a good friend. You have also advanced me in my walk. You are continually pushing me out of my comfort zone. I thank you for your faith in me to lead, where I may not have always had that faith in myself. I am encouraged by your willingness to stand for what you think is right. I wish more Christian men had the courage to do the same.
I thank God for putting all these men in my life. And I think Him now for the future pastors who will shape my life.